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Last Night I Watched: ‘Parasite’

Parasite is a Korean thriller/comedy which has won multiple awards since its release in 2019. When it first came out, I was not one of those people who rushed to watch it in the cinema (not entirely sure why I made this mistake). Now that the hype has died down a little, I was reminded of it while scrolling on Amazon Prime and decided to give it a watch. I had completely forgotten what the film is about, and, on top of this, I didn’t even read the description before starting to watch. Therefore, it is fair to say I went into this film with zero expectations and ideas of what I was about to see.

The plot of the film is quite unique and not similar to anything I have seen in the past. The film begins by showing us the struggles of the Kim family, who live in a semi-basement apartment and are on a very low income. When the opportunity arises, Ki-woo (the son) is hired as a tutor by the Parks family who are extremely wealthy. As the film progresses, the Kim family all get hired by the Parks, who remain unaware that their staff are all related. I have read that Parasite is unusual in the sense that it does not have a clear beginning, middle and end. Instead, it is more like a combination of two separate films. I couldn’t agree more with this. Around the middle of the film, once the Kim family are all hired, the Parks go away on a camping trip. This gives the Kims an opportunity to have a party and enjoy the lifestyle that they cannot usually afford, even if it is for one evening. Once the plot naturally comes to a pause, the doorbell rings and the other half of the film begins. What happens next is massively different to the plot in the first half of the film.

Parasite is unusual in the sense that it does not have a clear beginning, middle and end

Watching Parasite kept me wondering at all times. The second half of the film especially was so unpredictable that I was at the edge of my seat wondering what will happen next. I also really enjoyed the film because, although it was a mix of thriller and comedy, it touched upon numerous different issues. For example, it showed the viewer an insight into poverty, class differences, family values and sacrifice. I think there are lots of messages that can be taken away from this film.

I didn’t know what to expect going into this film but what I witnessed was way more than what I could have expected. I am not surprised that this film has already won multiple awards. In particular, I am very impressed that this film has made history as being the first ever foreign language film to win an Oscar for best picture. I think that films in languages other than English are extremely important as they help to portray the language, culture and people in a way that wouldn’t be possible in English. I would highly recommend to watch it if you haven’t already. And next time you watch a film, why not try to avoid reading the description or reviews beforehand?

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